Shipshewana, Indiana is a beloved destination for a variety of travelers due to the kinds of attractions, events, and experiences available. It’s a unique location in the U.S. because although the official population of Shipshewana is under a thousand, it is still the 3rd largest Amish population in the country, as most residents live in the surrounding scenic countryside. It has a long tradition of agriculture and a prevalent adherence to the old-fashioned ways of living and farming, as well as a community built on friendliness, hospitality, and hard work. Even the hobbies and crafts made locally are predominantly still made by hand, or with machines powered without electricity. Shipshewana is also popular with food lovers, crafter’s conferences, and quilters.
All these characteristics help to make Shipshewana a favorite place for group bus travelers. If you spend any time at all in Shipshewana, you’re sure to see a bus or two, full of people, here to taste the food, experience the culture, take some tours, and even catch a show. Some come in for a day, others plan multi-day excursions. Local tour guides, business owners, and artisans all work together to make these visits as seamless and interesting as possible. One popular experience with visitors is a Make & Take.
At a Make & Take event, you’ll meet the business owner or artisan (usually Amish) and tour their shop or workspace. They’ll answer your questions, give demos of their work, and assist you in creating your own, smaller version of whatever the specialty product is; Common items are quilt blocks, baskets, dolls, and pretzels. Whatever you’ve made is then yours to keep and take home. Make & Take! It is hands-on learning, made fun and easy.
Tour group itineraries are planned out well in advance, and typically include any Make & Takes that the particular group would enjoy. If you are a Shipshewana business owner or craftsman, and are interested in group Make & Take events, or a group tour planner interested in visiting, contact Judy McConnell at the Shipshewana Visitor’s Bureau: [email protected] or 260-768-4008.